UC Master Food Preservers give reside canning demonstrations at Orange County Fair
If you visited the Orange County Fair in Costa Mesa in the course of the previous month, you may need seen the Master Food Preservers of Orange County of their rustic farmhouse-themed kitchen situated within the OC Promenade exhibit corridor.
If the decor didn’t catch your eye, the colourful rows of glass jars lined alongside the partitions actually would have. For a complete month, three volunteers performed reside canning demonstrations from 11 a.m. to eight p.m. 5 days per week. They are with the UC Master Food Preserver Program, a public service and outreach program below UC Agriculture and Natural Resources.
The OC Fair is UC Master Food Preserver’s largest occasion in Orange County. Last 12 months, the UC Master Food Preservers engaged 7,000 folks at their sales space.
Canned meals by UC Master Food Preservers of Orange County.
For over 30 years, the UC Master Food Preserver program has educated tons of of volunteers statewide to maintain Californians secure as they use culturally applicable and research-based practices to protect meals within the dwelling and supply participating methods to discover wholesome meals.
Food preservation has a deep historical past rooted in human survival. Whether freezing, drying, fermenting or pickling, preservation is a apply that has extended the lifetime of meals and people. Other advantages embrace lowering meals waste and growing meals safety.
The newest type of preservation, referred to as canning, was launched within the early 1800s in response to a Smithsonian article. By putting meals in a glass jar and heating it to a sure temperature for a prescribed time period, oxygen is eliminated and a vacuum is created. This course of prevents the expansion of undesirable micro organism, yeasts and molds, thus holding the meals from spoiling.
This is what you’d have discovered the UC Master Food Preservers demonstrating on the OC Fair.
During her shift, Flo Vallejo, UC Master Food Preserver since 2018, rigorously chopped carrots and daikon into skinny slices and positioned them inside small mason jars with spices impressed by Vietnamese delicacies.
Between the produce donated by Melissa’s Produce and the various spices donated by Tampico Spice, the probabilities of what you will note the UC Master Food Preservers canning are countless.
“This is one thing my great-grandmother, grandmother and mom did. I by no means understood it as a result of they did not let the little youngsters within the kitchen,” stated first-year UC Master Food Preserver Alice Houseworth.
Many of the UC Master Food Preservers have some expertise with canning, whether or not it’s a apply handed down from era to era, or, in Houseworth’s case, one thing they watched their elders do as a toddler.
Some would possibly view canning as a pastime, however in response to the UC Master Food Preservers, meals preservation is a chance to organize for financial and climatic change.
UC Master Food Preservers Alice Houseworth and Flo Vallejo interact guests.
Esa Kiefer, one other UC Master Food Preserver since 2018, expressed her concern for the rising costs of meals and decline in arable land. “I really feel like now could be the time to organize for these altering instances,” she stated. “Who is aware of what the long run will appear to be for meals?”
Perhaps the way forward for meals will come from glass jars.
“You may even can rooster,” Houseworth stated. “When it is low cost on the grocery retailer, you should buy it and use the stress canner after which eat it when rooster costs go up.”
Vallejo remembers when pickling and canning had been trending on social media in the course of the stay-at-home section of the COVID-19 pandemic, making it tough to seek out mason jars.
“Preservation has been performed for a very long time. When I noticed lots of people doing it in the course of the pandemic, I believed it was simply because folks had time on their palms. But I noticed that many grew to become involved in regards to the meals provide and accessibility,” she defined.
The resurgence in meals preservation curiosity makes the work of the UC Master Food Preserver program way more important. Whether you’re feeding a big household, dwelling in a meals desert or managing a good funds, meals preservation ensures you’re fed right now, tomorrow and past.
To study extra in regards to the Master Food Preserver Program or to find the closest program in your space, go to: https://mfp.ucanr.edu/.